Search for source of FW home explosion that left man burned




Posted on August 16, 2010 at 12:40 PM

Updated Monday, Aug 16 at 8:31 PM

House explosion

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FORT WORTH - A 75-year-old man remains in critical condition in the Parkland Memorial Hospital burn unit after his Fort Worth house exploded over the weekend. While a natural gas leak was suspected, Atmos Energy says it has yet to find any such leak in their ground search.

Family of the victim, Albert Long, said he suffered severe burns on nearly half of his body, including to his face, neck, chest and arms.

Long was inside cooking breakfast at about 9:30 a.m. Sunday when the single-family home located in the 3900 block of Chenault Street exploded, leaving much of it a burnt shell with debris spread throughout the yard.

Atmos crews said no natural gas leaks were found in the ground during their early Monday morning search. However, fire officials said something was definitely leaking inside Long's home.

There was a natural gas furnace inside the home's attic, but that hasn't been concluded to be the source of the leak at this point.

Long's family said he hadn't complained of a natural gas leak before the explosion.

"His entire life is destroyed," said Deana Long, his niece. "I don't know what to say, I really don't ... But, thank God he is alive."

WFAA investigations have shown Atmos has had problems failing to maintain its equipment, including couplings, in the past.